Too many aspirants for MGNREGS jobs -THE HINDU-01-06-2020


During a reality check, it was found that some had found alternative jobs, while in some cases even graduates have turned to MNREGA for help. In contrast to the claim of officials, representatives of farmers organisations complained of corruption and non-cooperation at village level.

In Belagavi district, the officials say they are making extensive preparations to gainfully employ labourers who have returned from big cities through MNREGA. We have clocked 90,000 person days per day till May 26,” said zilla panchayat chief executive officer K. Sateesh, following lockdown the demand for job cards had increased and consequently they had added new works to be taken up under MNREGA.

Navalgund Taluk Panchayat executive officer Pavitra Patil said MNREGA had helped workers who hitherto travelled to cities like Hubballi and Dharwad to find job at their village.

Problems remain:

Activists complain that village-level officials are not enthusiastic about the scheme. “Because of fear of COVID-19, most officials don’t want to start works in villages to avoid inspection or meeting the labourers. “Some officials say they are busy in COVID-related works like setting up quarantine centres or door-to-door health survey. “In some villages, officials are demanding Rs20 per labourer to create nominal muster rolls.

Alternative jobs:

In Kalaburagi district, amid those waiting for job cards, several have found alternative opportunities. Pandu Chavan of Mahagaon tanda in Kalaburagi district, who worked as a construction labourer in Mumbai for the last 25 years, has now joined a construction site at Kamalanagar village along with his two sons and is earning Rs600 per day compared with the Rs700 he earned in Mumbai.

But Pandu still prefers to return to Mumbai after lockdown as work is available ‘here’ only for 4-5 months. Like Doddappa, there are people like Mailarappa, a native of Tippanahalli village in Shahpur taluk, who are waiting to return to Bengaluru.

Still waiting:

In Yadigir district, it was 13,284 jobs and 12,843 new job cards. However, there is a data mismatch. An official pointed out that instead of considering only adults under MNREGA, all the members of migrant families had been included.

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